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It’s starting to feel like everything is getting a survival mode these days. Just the other day I bought a delicious sandwich from an undisclosed sandwich-selling store, and on the packaging was written “NOW WITH ADDED SURVIVAL ELEMENTS”.

Of course, that’s blatant exaggeration – but it’s to be expected when both Fallout 4 and Far Cry Primal are currently touting their addition of shiny new survival modes. The timing’s a bit suspect, isn’t it? As though they’re in cahoots. I smell a conspiracy.

Anyway! Far Cry Primal‘s Survivor Mode is set to arrive on April 12th via a free patch. Ubisoft says that the primary function of the new mode is to bring a “change in the exploration, crafting, and difficulty of the game to make it even more realistic”. They’re including an impressive amount of customisation options for Survivor Mode, letting you tweak the difficulty so that you can decide exactly how punishing and/or frustrating and/or heartbreaking you want the experience to be.

There’ll be the option to enable permadeath, and there’s also a setting which gives you one extra life that can be replenished at specific points should you lose it. Permadeath is always enabled for animal companions though. You’ll still have the opportunity to save your tamed critters before they truly perish, but once they’re gone, they’re gone for good and you’ll have to tame yourself a new animal buddy. There’s a bunch of other stuff going on in there too. Read:

Survivor mode adds a stamina gauge, making protagonist Takkar slower and weaker when it runs out, and forcing him to sleep in order to replenish it. The minimap is now turned off by default, pushing you to pay more attention to your surroundings, and the fog of war has been strengthened, lessening the amount of the map you reveal as you explore. You’ll encounter humans and animals less often as you explore, which means hunting takes a little more patience. Even fast travel is a little tougher, as it now consumes stamina and food.

Takkar himself has also been weakened in a few key ways. He can no longer rain remote-control death on foes using his owl, for example, and crafting ammo now takes a few seconds, instead of being instantaneous. He’s also now a lot more susceptible to cold, which increases his dependency on fire, and makes crafting cold-weather gear a top priority if you’re planning to venture into the chillier parts of Oros. On the upside, the duration of Takkar’s Hunter Vision has been increased – which should come in handy for surviving the longer, darker, deadlier nights that now befall the land of Oros.

You’ll find more information about Survivor Mode if you check out the Ubisoft blog. Miklós reviewed Far Cry Primal and was mighty pleased. Head over here to read his thoughts.

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